Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Interesting Couple | Catherine Martin & Baz Luhrmann

“You can’t divide them, CM and Baz. They blur—he helps her; she helps him,” says fellow Aussie Nicole Kidman, star of two Luhrmann epics, Moulin Rouge! and Australia. As far as Martin and Luhrmann are concerned, however, the line of demarcation is clear: The director, 50, is the visionary, the big dreamer, the story driver. Martin, 48, is the pragmatist, the one charged with bringing his schemes, no matter how wacky, to life. Over the course of a career, you come up with many ways to describe such an arrangement: “Baz is the author, the one who generates the kernel of the idea, and I’m an applied artist,” is one way Martin puts it. Or, “He’s driving the motorbike, and I’m in the sidecar.” 

For his part, Luhrmann says CM—the nickname he gave her over two decades ago, now her standard appellation—is “my council on everything, my number-one debater, and my first-ever audience.” She’s also the person with the no-nonsense gumption to make it all happen. “She’s a general in the field,” he says, marveling. “I’ve seen her with some of the burliest building guys telling her, ‘Well, love, we’ll never be able to put a house in the jungle like that,’ and next thing you know there’s helicopters and moving trucks.”


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